Korea’s Jiyai Shin shot a superb final round 4 under par 69 to win the 2016 RACV Ladies Masters at RACV Royal Pines Resort today, defeating England’s Holly Clyburn by three shots.
Shin had held the overnight lead by two shots from Clyburn and Sweden’s Camilla Lennarth, and the talented European pair piled on the early pressure. The 28year old Swede made early birdies at the 1st and 3rd holes to join Shin in the lead at 10 under par while Clyburn herself made birdies at 3rd and 6th holes to make it a three way tie at the top, before Shin broke out of the tie with a birdie herself at the 6th to edge clear again. Two more birdies at the 8th and 10th holes saw the affable Korean take a 2 shot lead, however just when Shin seemed completely in charge she would falter with bogeys at the 11th and 13th, where she drove into the water to fall back into a tie for the lead with Lennarth, who had earlier birdied the 8th hole to get to 11 under par.
Shin would bounce back with a birdie at 15 and the 16 came the killer blow when she holed from 3 metres and a comfortable three shot lead with just two holes to play after Lennarth had bogeyed the 14th hole.
The margin would prove too great for the chasing pack to overcome, and Shin would cruise to a three shot victory with a birdie at the last for a 4 under par round of 69.
The 27year old former winner of the 2013 Women’s Australian Open was obviously delighted to win in Australia for the second time. “I really wanted to win this tournament because previously I came second. I really want my photo up with the past champions. I got a lot of motivation from each. I feel really good. I want to stay here. I love coming to Australia, it really feels like home, I would love to stay here! I love the pies and some beer but please keep this a secret from my trainer! It is great to win, that means I get to come back next year”
Shin said that she had really enjoyed the newly re-designed RACV Royal Pines layout. “When I first played the course earlier in the week it gave me a really good feel. I love playing links style golf and in the wind and this course gave me a similar feel so I came into the tournament really confident. You really have to concentrate around the greens, it really has changed a lot”
Holly Clyburn birdied the last to finish alone in second place at 11 under par, while Camilla Lennarth and Nicole Broch Larsen finished in a tie for 3rd place at 10 under par.
16 year old Korean Hye Jin Choi finished as the leading amateur at 8 under par in a tie for 5th place, while 2009 RACV Ladies Masters Champion Katherine Kirk finished as the leading Australian at 1 under par in 17th place.